CSI: NY s08e15 Episode Script

Kill Screen

Think it could be a, like, a flash mob thing? I don't know, but, listen, I'm talking about business, an investment opportunity for you.
This right here, worth $60,000.
I like the sound of that.
Well, the way I see it, you and I can have a beautiful future.
Gorland? Darren Gorland? - Yeah.
- Your card was declined.
- You've been served.
- What? Stand back, gentlemen.
Disposal crew came to empty the bins, found this.
We started knocking on doors.
Hawkes, not a lot of blood.
I know, which is inconsistent with the length and depth of this head wound.
Produced a pretty significant blood pool.
Tarp was used to transport the body after he bled out.
Body dump.
List of names.
Process server I.
Walter Danzig.
Process server? What's with the referee uniform? Looks like the game he was calling ended in sudden death.
Out here in the fields I fight for my meals I get my back into my living Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah.
Body temp is 88.
3 degrees.
Puts TOD around seven hours ago.
Subconjunctive hemorrhaging.
Probably caused by intracranial pressure from the head wound.
Okay, yeah, thank you.
Walter's employer says that he was one of their best.
Apparently tracking people down was like a game to him.
He liked to dress up, posing as delivery guys, plumbers, you name it.
- He was creative.
- I'm guessing some of his targets didn't enjoy his artistic approach.
And he served over 200 summons just last month.
That's one hell of a suspect pool.
Climb down From your window Tonight We lie as one Okay.
Fingers tired from counting all that patent money? Right.
Come on, Sid, you're a millionaire inventor now.
Tell me you've indulged just a little.
Well, last week, I'd always lusted after one of these and I finally did it.
I bought a Dyson.
As in vacuum cleaner? A great vacuum cleaner.
- Oh, Sid.
- Wha You know, Jo, I-I-I made a list of all the things I want to buy, everything I could think of, and it only came to $56,374.
If I had it, I'd spend that much on bracelets.
My Lord.
What are we looking at? Oh, our victim is 36, and has the hands of my grandfather.
Ruptured extensor tendons in both thumbs, virtually no cartilage left in the joints, and onycholysis, where the fingernails detach from the nail beds.
Well, that could be caused from fungal infection, psoriasis - No sign of either.
- Then what caused it? Technology.
There's been an uptick in these types of injuries lately.
Used to be you only saw this kind of trauma in older assembly line workers, people who do repetitive manual tasks for long hours.
Now it's mostly young folks.
Some people use terms like "Blackberry thumb" or "Nintendinitis" to describe repetitive stress injuries, but I've never seen anything this severe.
Well, he's young, 36.
- But he's a process server, correct? - Mm-hmm.
But his thumbs suggest that in his spare time, he was doing something else.
Assorted contusions indicate some kind of struggle.
I found a fine, chalk-like powder inside the victim's nose, in his ears, eyes.
Almost like he was hit in the face with a handful of flour.
Subdural hematoma shows that C.
was blunt force trauma, but the head injury was rather strange.
There are four puncture wounds in a line.
Wow, it suggests the weapon was a row of points with a flat edge that runs the length of the wound.
I scoured a list of common tools or implements that could cause that kind of wound, nothing matched.
So our killer's weapon is as unique as our victim.
Hey, Mac, so I found the tread pattern on the tarp.
Unfortunately, it's not a match to the soles of our vic's shoes.
Lifted heel.
Full print with no distortion.
Not a very flexible sole.
Probably a hiking or work boot.
Yeah, more than likely, left by the person who rolled the body up.
Also found a void here in the tread, present in every step.
Could be the trademark or logo of a particular brand of shoe.
Also found a gel-like substance in the tread pattern.
There's nothing indicating where this tarp came from or where the victim was killed.
Missing grommet.
Plastic's thick.
Yeah, I was thinking, maybe, this was a, uh, drop sheet from a construction site.
But there's no traces of sawdust or stone powder, anything like that.
Some kind of color staining here, demarcating some kind of border.
Heat, moisture and pressure can cause pigment transfer.
And if we amplify the pigment, we may be able to recover some image detail.
Try it.
Because something other than Walter Danzig's body was wrapped inside this tarp.
Very nice.
All right well, we need you to work some of your digital magic here, buddy.
Okay, hold on a second.
Almost there.
Okay, put these back to normal colors so we can get a better idea of what the image originally was.
Combine all three images.
And boom.
Looks like a silhouette of a person.
Question is who is it? Okay.
- What's wrong? - The list of names we found on Walter Danzig's body doesn't match up with any of the people that his office said he was supposed to serve this week.
You find out what was in the victim's hair? Glass.
I put it under a polarized light, found those horizontal striations.
Tempered glass.
Designed to break into tiny pieces.
I also found a dark tint on one side.
- Like a car window? - Exactly.
So what do you think we're looking at, a carjacking gone wrong? C.
and the method of the body dump doesn't fit.
The only way to be sure is to find that car.
You ride? Not unless they start making them with training wheels.
- What do you see here? - Something I hope to never see my son wearing.
Look right there - in that area, what do you see? - Nothing.
Uh, here.
Hold on.
That's a picture or impression of a skull.
That's neat.
I'm Southern, we still say "neat.
" Well, if we were out on the open road in the sun and everything, you know, you'd see it a lot more clearly.
It's called "ghost on" paint.
It's made by creating a powder that's a mixture of mica encased in titanium oxide and an infrared pigment and it gives the paint this iridescent color.
Now, this powder is what I pulled off the collar of Walter Danzig's jacket.
Someone could have - grabbed our vic by the collar.
- Right.
And these look like they could've caused the puncture wounds.
On the day that he died, Walter Danzig was delivering a summons to the owner of a motorcycle shop.
And that motorcycle shop specializes in "ghost on" paint.
Well, let's go.
- What can I do for you ladies? - Darren Gorland? - Yes, ma'am.
- I'm Detective Danville.
This is Detective Messer.
We don't detail police bikes anymore.
We're not customers.
We're here to talk about what happened when you were served last night.
Nothing happened.
Then how did Walter Danzig wind up with your paint all over his clothes? Who's Walter Danzig? The man who served you.
- Well, what happened to him? - Well, nothing, - according to you.
- Right.
So? Look, you know what? If you want, I can recommend another shop that, you know, - that uses the same kind of paint.
- Darren, please don't make this harder than it has to be.
The guy could've just come in here and served me the papers.
But dressing up like a waiter and doing a whole sting operation? Like I'm some deadbeat ducking the law? Come on.
I mean, would you invest - after seeing that? - And Walter messed that up for you? I'm trying to grow my business.
So I was gonna expand.
But to do that, I need investors.
Well, I had one.
Until he ruined it for me.
I'd be furious.
I'd want to ring his neck.
Maybe even bludgeon him to death with a spiked helmet.
Like that one right there.
Whoa, whoa, whoa.
What? Walter Danzig was murdered.
He's dead, and you think I killed him? Darren, you already told us what Walter cost you.
You already told us how mad you were.
Your paint was found on his jacket.
And those spikes just might match his head wound.
Wait a minute.
Yeah after he served me, I followed him outside the diner.
I found him toking up inside his car.
I threw a trash can at his window.
Wait! Get out! Hey, hey And I roughed him up a little.
That's it, ladies.
Can you tell us where you were at 2:00 a.
last night? Asleep in bed.
- Someone can vouch for that? - No.
I wasn't just trying to get an investor I was also trying to get laid.
Unis found the car dumped by the East River.
I ran the plates, got a hit to Walter Danzig.
No blood pool by the vehicle or in the front seat.
- So he wasn't killed in the car.
- No.
This broken glass fits what we found in Walter's hair.
Uppers and downers.
Check these out.
Huh So this guy's spending all his money on weed and video games.
And his time on something else.
What is this? Ah.
- Some kind of computer code.
- Yeah, but for what? Missing grommet from the tarp.
Traces of blood in the trunk.
So the killer used Walter's car to transport the body.
But from where? Ooh.
You guys, spending all your time looking for hairs and fibers, missed the one thing that tells us exactly where this car was when Walter died his parking stub.
Janus Convention Center.
This place is a madhouse.
And possibly our crime scene.
Is she your type? I'll tell you, these guys got it a lot better than the A/V kids when we were in high school.
Well, maybe one of them can teach you how to beat your wife at Halo.
You think you can beat me on the boardwalk? I've done it before.
I'll do it again.
Save it for the bedroom, you two.
Check it out.
All right.
That's our guy.
Look at those colors.
It matches the silhouette.
I'm thinking that poster was wrapped inside the tarp before his body.
Walter Danzig is a champion gamer? Was a champion.
Game over.
The awards for a video game tournament? I had a perfect Sunday delivery in Paperboy never got a trophy.
Guess video games have come a long way since then.
The event coordinators said that Walter organized this amateur Gears of War tournament.
The winner gets to play on the pro circuit.
That means we got to interview everybody that's up on that stage.
That girl's peddling the same energy salts we found in Walter's car.
Walter Danzig should really be the one handing out these awards, but he seems to be running late.
So let's get started.
While he may not be Top Gear, our runner up, Threepwood22, aka Steve Blanton, a transit worker from right here in Brooklyn, still deserves a nice round of applause.
Let's hear it for him.
Congratulations, Steve.
Second place.
Okay He's a four-time Diesel Punk world champ, a two-time War Claw champ, and now first-time Top Gear MJDiesel! Diesel! Diesel! Diesel! Diesel! Diesel! Diesel! Diesel! Diesel! We need to talk to those guys.
Geez, you'd think this guy's Mark Sanchez or something.
Except this guy wins championships.
Hurts because it's true.
- What is this stuff anyway? - Ah, the only stuff you need to play all night long.
Theanine, guarana, caffeine, ginkgo, and taurine 'cause the dweebs think it does something, so they want to see it on the label.
Watch who you're calling a dweeb.
Back in the day, I ruled over Street Fighter 2.
- Oh.
Is that right? - From Playland all the way to the Chinatown Fair Arcade.
Oh, my God.
I-I just, I just saw him last night.
- What time was that? - U-Uh, 11:30.
I'm sorry.
This is, this is just a lot to process.
So Walter organized this whole thing? Not the whole expo, just the Gears stuff, like the tournament, the LAN parties.
Uh, he chooses a group of the top amateurs to compete.
- And you were invited? - Yeah.
I mean, I worked really hard.
Walter valued that.
He was a good guy.
He even taught my son how to play.
How old is your son? Seven.
I know, Gears is a very violent game, but my son's a tough kid and it's something we can do together.
So how long had you known Walter? Almost ten years.
We met back on the Halo circuit, but then his thumbs blew out.
At this level it's career ending.
That's why he got into reffing, organizing this tournament.
Anybody angry with Walter? Have you seen him arguing with anyone recently, perhaps? I mean, Walter was the ref, so, you know, people get disqualified or a call doesn't go their way, they get pissed.
Anything in his personal life? Personal life? This is it.
We breathe this.
In here, guys like Walt and I get to be famous.
So, if I wanted to buy some of this stuff Not on the market yet.
Just, uh, demoing samples for promotion.
Huh Do you know this guy? Oh, yeah, it's the ref.
He was murdered last night.
Found a bunch of this stuff in his car.
That's crazy.
You have any idea why he'd have your energy salts? No, well, I mean, how much did he have? About 50 packets.
Look, I'll check my inventory.
But unless some kids filled their candy bags when I wasn't looking, I'm sorry, I can't help you.
So that's your type, huh? In all these banners, this guy's holding a gun.
So how come our guy here doesn't have one? Hmm.
Thinking somebody might have used it? Well, those spikes of this scale - that could cause our victim's wounds.
- Yeah.
Look at this.
This rock here is broken.
That would indicate signs of a struggle.
- See any blood? - No.
I mean, beside the Minotaur’s blood.
Hey, I got something here.
Looks like the real thing.
Looks like there's more under these rocks.
It's going down.
- Got it? - Yeah.
Now that's real blood.
Found a small amount of this clear gel.
It's similar to what I found in the boot print on the tarp.
Gravitational drops here and here.
Could be relevant, or might have just been under there well before it happened.
Well, I think I've got a partial print here.
Looks like the right angle for someone to have grabbed the weapon.
And then, kill shot.
How does a person commit a murder in such a public place? Flack confirmed with organizers that Walter had full access to the convention center after hours to set up his space for the next day.
I guess no one ever thinks it's one of their own.
You think the motive is related to video games? Well, they were definitely the most important thing to him.
Based on his hand injuries, Walter was playing video games at least 35 hours a week.
That's practically a full-time job.
For some people it is.
The highest paid professional gamers make over $500,000 a year in tournament winnings and endorsements.
You know, when I was a kid, I used to bring a bag full of quarters to the arcade and set up in front of the Asteroids machine - for a whole Saturday.
- Really? I would have never clocked you as a nerd.
So, I took another look at the energy packets that we found in Danzig's car and compared them to the ones that - Flack took off the booth babe.
- The what? Sorry, that's what they call them, not me.
All right, the packets that Flack found, they were factory sealed.
The ones from Danzig's car appeared to be opened, and then someone used a lighter to reseal them.
I analyzed the salts in the GCMS and found that the resealed packets had a lot more than taurine and caffeine in them.
Designer drug that just got added to the Controlled Substances Act.
Street name is MCAT or Drone.
The trace that Sid found on the victim's face and nose? Sale for human consumption has been made illegal.
But another way to get around that is to Sell it as fertilizer for people's gardens.
So this drug makes the kids concentrate and focus better.
It makes them feel invincible.
Something that may be of interest to gamers looking to get an edge.
So, if this stuff is video game steroids, why did Walter have it? I mean, maybe he caught someone selling the drugs to a tournament player, took the packets, and threatened to pull the plug? And the seller could have killed him to keep it quiet.
Robotic, technotronic Robotic, technotronic Robotic, technotronic Robotic, technotronic Robotic-botic-botic Ro-Ro-Ro-Ro-Ro-Ro-Ro-Robotic R-R-R, ro-ro-ro-ro-ro-ro-ro-robotic Technotronic, robotic Stop! I'll head her off! Out of the way.
Hey! Out of the way now! Shake, shake, shake, shake, shake Shake, shake, shake, shake, shake Get out of the way.
Shake, shake, shake, shake Shake, shake, shake, shake, shake, shake Stop, come on, enough! Ro-Ro-Ro-Ro-R-R-R-Robotic Where are you going, honey? Robotic, technotronic.
Hey there, need a tutorial? She's got a date.
Let's go.
I'm disappointed, Vera.
I really thought we had something.
- Oh, well, we'll always have Paris.
- So, how does it work? What? Is there a code word or something? Is it one blink for caffeine, two blinks for rocket fuel? Look, I'm sorry that I ran, okay? That stuff wasn't even illegal a month ago.
I was just trying to sell off what I had to break even.
Your drugs were found in a murdered man's car.
I told you I had nothing to do with that.
But you also lied to me, when you told me you didn't know how they got there.
- So that makes me a killer? - All you are right now is a liar and a drug dealer.
You have the power to change that.
You can tell us the truth right now.
The ref Walter he found out that I was selling to some of the players in his tournament.
You think I'm stupid and I don't know what this is.
I don't know what you're talking about.
You don't know what I'm talking about? You can't come in here and sell this crap, okay? I know what this is, and I want to know who you sold it to.
I don't know their names, I just know, I just know their Gear handles.
Fine, tell me their Gear handles.
One of the side effects of MCAT is it turns your fingertips blue.
I guess that he noticed it in one of the earlier rounds.
After he was completely finished flipping out on me, he told me that he wasn't going to turn me in.
I just had to give him the Drone and a list of any Gear player who bought it.
- But you gave him a list? - Yeah.
And all the Drone I had on me, too.
It's half my supply, over $1,000.
And for no real guarantee that he wouldn't turn you in at any moment.
Too trusting's always been my biggest flaw.
Which still leaves you with motive and no alibi.
Look, I didn't kill him because he didn't care that I was selling performance enhancers.
He cared that the players in his tournament were using the performance enhancers.
You want my number? Write down your friend's handles.
Unless she borrowed a pair of shoes, I doubt that girl wears a size 12 work boot, like the prints from the tarp.
With how high passions run and a professional gaming career at stake, Walter would be under pressure to keep this tournament clean.
So, if our killer is a disgruntled gamer, we might be able to find prints on the controllers used in the tournament.
One that matches the palm print Lindsay found on the Diesel Punk statue.
All right, so the handles Vera gave Walt correspond to the list of names we found on his body.
Of those gamers, three were knocked out in the first round, one was disqualified, and two said Walt gave them the option of resigning to save face.
Sounds like six good motives.
Hey, Mac, I think I may have found a connection between our crime scene and our dump site.
You mean other than the victim? Yeah, well, the substance Danny found in the footprints on the tarp was an epoxy paint, and the substance he found at the crime scene was a polyurethane coating.
Both are used to coat metal surfaces to protect them from graffiti.
So, our killer had a lot of contact with surfaces that were frequently graffitied.
Maybe we're looking for a tagger.
Or a graffiti - protection specialist.
- I'm moving him, but he's not moving.
I just put a grenade in your pants! He's not moving! Come on! Ooh! How do I shoot? You press "X.
" "X"? Yeah.
I'm hitting "X.
" Watch me shoot you right in the face.
Gentlemen Come on, I-I move left, he goes right.
That's me.
Solving murders one awesome kill at a time.
Ooh! What up? No? Okay, uh This is what was found in the hard drive from the crime scene.
It's Gears of War 3, and it is awesome.
Well, maybe if you didn't play sports so much as a teenager and played some video games, you'd be winning like me.
Oh, right, yeah, um, the hard drive that's in this Xbox was actually the one that was used in the final round of the tournament.
But the game, Gears of War, was rigged.
Ah, that's why you killed me.
The computer coding found in the vic's car it's a step by step guide on how to hack the game.
Now, I tried using some of the coding to modify a regular Gears of War game, and I got this.
See that box? It's a target box.
Every time my character fires into that box, it hits Danny's character.
Now, this is a regular sized box.
And this is a rigged box.
This one player his character's target box was 50% smaller than normal, which made it really hard to get an actual hit.
And his opponent's well, they're double the size.
So it's twice as easy to hit them.
- Someone was cheating.
- But why would Walter cheat? I mean, that would ruin the integrity of his tournament.
Well, he had enough integrity to kick out the players who were using drugs.
Maybe Walter caught someone else cheating.
The codes that we found in his car were him trying to figure out how they did it.
Walter confronts the cheater, who decides to kill him to keep it quiet.
So who was the cheater? The guy who won.
I cross-referenced the print on the statue with the print on the controllers used by each player in the tournament.
Mitch Johnson.
Anyway, that's just how MJDiesel rolls, baby.
You're MJDiesel? You're looking at the one and only.
And if you want to look at him again, you're going to have to look through bars.
Let's go.
The thing about being the king is you always need to protect your throne.
You know, killing someone in a video game isn't a crime.
I can't imagine how much time you had to put in to be champion of three different games.
All that work, and then to find out someone else might be better than you? So good that he might beat you? No one beats MJDiesel.
Not after you hacked the game.
Walter found out what you were up to, threaten to ruin your credibility, take your trophy away.
So you made sure he wasn't at the trophy ceremony.
You think I killed Walter? We found your palm prints on the Diesel Punk statue.
On the hands, right where the murder weapon was taken.
Because I'm the greatest Diesel Punk gamer of all time.
Some fan asked me to pose for a picture with him.
You got a copy of that picture? To prove it? Look.
You guys have this all wrong.
Walter knew I was cheating all along.
He's the one who hacked the game for me.
All that coding? There's no way I could've done that stuff.
That's all Walter.
I-I only know how to work the controller.
I have no idea what's inside that box.
Why would he do that? He was trying to get his tournament sponsored.
Make it legit.
Instead of a launchpad for a professional career, Walter was trying to get his tournament on the pro circuit.
So in order to attract any sponsors, he needed a celebrity gamer.
And that was you.
There's always younger and younger kids coming up.
Born holding iPads and hopped up on ADD meds.
We were just trying to hold onto the one thing we had, where we meant something.
If I knew anything about his murder, I would tell you.
If Walter was involved in the cheating we might be looking for someone who got wise to his scheme.
Who stood the most to lose? All the gamers who Mitch beat in the tournament.
So we're looking for a gamer in Mitch's bracket, who had access to the rigged Xbox.
Someone who wears a size 12 work boot, tracking polyurethane and epoxy paint everywhere he went.
They put that stuff on every subway car that used to have heavy graffiti, so if we just figure out What? What are you thinking? Who stood the most to lose? Second place is the first loser.
When I was a kid, my dad used to take me to the carnival in the summer.
I loved to do the milk bottle toss.
But I never won.
When I was older, my dad explained to me that it was rigged.
That one of the bottles was weighted so it couldn't fall over.
I was so mad.
Then my dad told me that life wasn't fair.
But I didn't accept that.
What's your point here, Detective? Well, I can imagine how you must feel.
Something you spent so much time on, you cared so much about.
The late nights, for nothing.
You hauled me off in handcuffs in front of my son.
So, please, just tell me what it is you're getting at.
We found these boot prints on the tarp that Walter's body was wrapped in.
We also found boots with the same gouge in the left tread in your garage.
We also found polyurethane coating in the prints on the tarp.
And epoxy paint at the crime scene.
These are chemicals that you use every day as a transit worker.
Steve Make this easy on yourself.
And your son.
My whole life everyone's always felt sorry for me.
Last to get promoted, first to get laid off.
Then I started playing Gears, and for one time in my life, I was the best at something, I was someone other people wanted to be.
I was cool in my son's eyes.
All of a sudden, winning that tournament became the most important thing in the world.
Then you found out the game was rigged.
I knew that there was something weird about that game.
When everyone cleared out, I went and played on the console that they used in the final round.
It was obvious.
Hey, Steve, man, where you at? You called to confront Walter.
Hey, man.
You shouldn't be hanging around here after it's closed.
I know what you did.
Did you take apart my consoles? Just the one.
The one you rigged.
I don't know what you're talking about.
I found the hacked game, Walter.
I trusted you, we all trusted you! Listen We can work something out.
Work what out? It's over.
I didn't want to start a fight.
Steve, no, give me it! After everything happened, I couldn't stop thinking about my son and about my ex-wife, trying to explain to him why he wasn't going to see his father anymore, so I panicked.
What'd you do with the weapon? Tossed it.
I'm sure everyone says this to you, and it doesn't matter, but I never meant to kill him.
I I-I know that life isn't fair, I get that, I get My wife left me, and I only see my kid once a week.
But video games are supposed to be fair.
The best player wins.
If you're searching for fairness, you're focused on the wrong things, Steve.
You have a son.
Who's going to grow up without his father.
How is that fair? Some unis fished it out of the dumpster before the trash went out.
Come on, did you rig this game again? Let's go play a game.
Come on.
Asteroids has to translate.
Aah! Oh, come on, man.
Don't be a sore loser.
I'm owning you right now.
Hey, Mac.
Listen, why don't you pull up a chair and challenge the champ, okay? Now, look.
I just want to warn you, this is not like the old-school games.
Grab this.
See these little buttons here? Press those.
It's not like in the olden days, with the black and white screen and the little ball, or Ms.
Pac-Man Oh, not so easy there, huh? Oh, hey! Wow.
Billy the Kid over here.
Come on, Mac.
Try to come after me.
It's okay, little buddy.
It's all right.
Mac, what is it? How come you're so good at everything? Give me one of those.
What? All right.
- Let's see what you got.
- Watch out.
Coming after you.
Oh, who's shooting me? That would be me.
What? Ha! I got you.
You're like a sniper, where are you? Coming to get you.
Watch this, Adam.
That's really gonna leave a mark.